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Friday, 19 March 2021

Fortune favours the brave


By Jillian Viljoen

For those of us familiar with the John Wick movies, John has a tattoo across his back which reads "Fortis Fortuna Adiuvat". That is a Latin proverb which translates to "fortune favours the bold" or “fortune favours the brave”. John Wick’s character faces constant adversity resulting in action-filled movies with John triumphing against all odds due to his tenacity and unwavering determination to survive. The meaning of the Latin proverb is lived out in John’s courage and bravery when facing difficulties. But do we need to triumph over extreme adversity, like John Wick, to achieve success?

Our lives are not as hectic as John’s but we do face adversities and we are able to overcome them, either on our own or with the help of others. When we pursue tertiary education, after matric, we are not familiar with the university environment. The campus, the rules, the curriculum, lectures and everything that we are exposed to for the first time can be daunting  and, for some of us, we sometimes feel so overwhelmed that the thought of giving up does cross our minds. But our determination to complete our qualification compels us to seek out assistance from our lecturers, the administration staff in our disciplines, the student counsellors, tutors, the library staff and anyone who can provide guidance
which will assist us to navigate our way to the completion of our qualification. This same determination propels us when we pursue postgraduate studies. We face our fears and challenges with courage and bravery and we overcome and are successful.

We all face challenges daily and we have to choose if we will let fear paralyse us into giving up or if we will be brave and work through the challenges. COVID-19 has altered the way we approach academia, and life in general, resulting in us being forced out of our comfort zones and embracing new modes of teaching and learning. Fear of the unknown and uncertainty sometimes clouds our judgement but our resolution to succeed spurs us on. It is not always easy but we can do it. We can ask for help if we cannot do it alone. In the face of the pandemic, let us all motivate and support each other. We are not alone.

Be brave. Be bold. Be courageous. You are much stronger than you think.

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